September 30, 2014

Schumer, Gillibrand Announce Nearly $3 Million For La Guardia Community College In Queens

Funding Will Support Student Retention and Success Program

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senators Charles Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand today announced $2,908,031 in federal funding for La Guardia Community College in Long Island City, Queens. The federal funding was allocated through the U.S. Department of Education’s First in the World (FITW) Program and will be used to support La Guardia’s Project Completa: Comprehensive Support for Student Success Program. More specifically, funding will be used to enhance pre-enrollment services for low-income and minority students and will also partner students with faculty in their majors, in order to help students succeed and complete school. This project is expected to support more than 25,000 students as they enroll in college and work towards completing a two-year degree.

"La Guardia Community College provides top-notch education to New York City students and this federal investment will help make sure these students succeed. Now is the time to invest in our students, so I am pleased that the U.S. Department of Education awarded La Guardia Community a grant through the First in the World Program,” said Senator Schumer.

“This is such a great investment for La Guardia Community College,” said Senator Gillibrand, who wrote a letter to the Department of Education in support of the application. “Providing New York’s students with the resources and support needed to enroll and complete college will help bridge the gap for students - so they can reach their full potential. This funding will help students partner with faculty so they can get the attention they deserve; helping them focus so they can succeed.”

“Winning the ‘First in the World’ competition will give LaGuardia the resources we need to further spur innovation at our campus and directly and powerfully help our students graduate so they can transform their lives and their families’ lives,” said Dr. Gail O. Mellow, President of LaGuardia Community College. “We greatly appreciate the vision of Secretary of Education Arne Duncan and Under Secretary of Education Ted Mitchell, and the Obama Administration, for launching this competition, which will unearth smart ideas from across the nation on how we can open the doors to higher education to more Americans and help them earn a college degree, which is essential to a prosperous future for our students and nation.”

La Guardia Community College has been a staple in the Queens community for more than thirty-two years. The public institution enrolls more than 20,000 students each year with more than 41,000 students enrolled in non-credit career and job training programs. The college also hosts international students from more than 158 countries and its facilities are utilized by more than 97,000 people each year.

The First in the World program provides grants to colleges and universities to help retain and graduate students from underserved populations.  The program aims to make college more affordable for students and families and to provide support to help students succeed.

Full text of Senator Gillibrand’s letter to the Department of Education is attached.